War Eagles Soar to New Heights

Buoyed by a strong core of seniors, the Mocksville Davie War Eagles have been on a rampage during the 2004 season.

After scoring impressive and often dominating wins against the competition, the War Eagles are off to perhaps the best start of any team in the state. Compiling an impressive 8-0 record thus far, the War Eagles have already taken the number two slot in our NCPrepReport.com 4A rankings to national powerhouse Independence and look poised to capture yet another Central Piedmont 4A title.

"We have a really good core of seniors who have played together since they were sophomores," said Coach Doug Illing. "These young men have developed both mentally and physically. Many of these guys are three year starters, so the success we're seeing is due to their hard work."

This hard work has not gone unnoticed by national analysts as Davie County boasts Scout.com rated QB/DB James "Cooter" Arnold and Wake Forest recruit TE Ted Randolph.

Arnold has been impressive to say the least, rushing 113 times for 1,138 yards so far and 16 touchdowns. On the defensive side of the ball, Arnold has nabbed 6 interceptions. Arnold's defensive and offensive intensity is mirrored by his teammates.

The War Eagles are not a one or two man show, however. In addition to Arnold and Randolph, the War Eagles have gotten solid contributions from MLB D.J. Rice and C Ryan Boehm, both seniors, among others.

The defense allows fewer than 10 points per game and the offense lights up opposing teams for around 37 points in a game.

"Both Arnold and Randolph are tremendous athletes who have really raised their level of play," remarked Illing. "Because of that, the guys around them have raised their level of play as well. Guys like D.J. Rice and Ryan Boehm have also contributed a lot to the inside game and probably don't get as much attention as they should."

How have the War Eagles responded to the increasing speculation that a 4A title is all but assured after such a strong performance thus far? With humility and focus.

"Our biggest game of the season is this week," said Illing. "That's been our thought process all year long. We don't want to look past anyone. We want to come out each and every week and play consistently. People are going to talk and speculate, but we just want to remain focused and play our best."

That may well be true, but with their 8-0 record, the War Eagles have some very big games behind them.

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